To be honest, I frequently have a hard time feeling truly forgiven. It’s fair to say I have an unhealthy relationship with guilt. The worst part of it all is that I recognize this, that my feelings regarding guilt are bad – and that makes me feel guilty. It’s a vicious cycle.

When we sing worship songs (SN. I totally tend to have tunnel vision in regards to Scripture, and only see what I’m currently reading, as witnessed in my ridiculous claim about a heart for the lost not being Biblical based on St. Paul never expressing such. But anyway, in regards to worship, I know why Ted prefers to call the singing time “worship” and not “praise”, why he prefers “worship team” instead of say “praise band”. And I’m down with that. But in my current O.T. reading, I get the distinct impression that when music is discussed, it’s most frequently accompanied by the word “praise”. I could be wrong, but that’s my impression. “Worship” seems to encompass more than just music, but the music part itself seems most frequently to be described as “praise”. Am I wrong about this?) about stuff like guilt and shame being washed away, honestly, I can’t fully relate.

Part of it might be that the gospel is so wonderful, I can’t fully believe it. The idea that all our sins are completely forgiven, such that we can be completely unashamed – maybe I can grasp it intellectually, but not fully emotionally.

And I don’t know, part of me is afraid to give up guilt about my sins. The problem with me is, guilt works. To a certain degree, at least. Guilt’s a piss poor fundamental motivation, but as a superficial thing, it’s pretty effective. I don’t know if it’s an Asian thing or what, but I think that’s part of it – Asian parents are extremely adept in utilizing guilt to motivate their kids. And I’d say that technique was perfected in me. Guilt works. So I’m afraid to give up my guilt about past sins else I might repeat them. If I don’t feel guilty about it, what’s to stop me from doing it again? What will keep me from repeating past sins if not guilt? Twisted thinking, I know.

And part of it is, I think I still hold somewhat to a works based idea of salvation. I don’t think there’s anything good we can do on our own for God. But I guess a part of me clings to the idea that when we do bad against God, there’s penance to be paid, works to be done to make up for it. I don’t have a rosary, don’t know the Hail Mary, so my penance is guilt.

I could go on and on about guilt. The good thing is, I think I’m not as self-righteous and judgmental as I was in high school, and that’s partly due to a greater awareness of my own sin. But I do think guilt is the single greatest thing in my life for which I need healing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *